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Selecting Spray Hose

Selecting Spray Hose




Your pest control spray hose or weed control spray hose can make your job easy or it can make your job hard. Which would you prefer?


Hose Selection:




Most technicians use either 3/8" or 1/2" (inside diameter) spray hose on their pest control power spray rigs. A larger diameter hose delivers more volume. Larger hose costs more and is heavier to pull out and wind up. The weight can be a factor for the technician at the end of a long day.

Smaller diameter hose results in more pressure loss due to increased friction of the water moving through the hose. If you require significant pressure, consider larger hose.   (For a useful chart on calculating pressure loss, download the Spraying Guide at http://www.qspray.com/hypro.html).



I don't like to use words like always or never. They often get you in trouble. When it comes to spray hose, it is ALWAYS better to have too much rather than too little. If you have 1 foot too little hose, you can't do your job. Longer hose enables you to spray hard to reach places. With a longer hose, when hose end becomes damaged, it can be cut off without having to purchase new hose.   The additional upfront cost of the extra hose is well worth the investment. If you only need longer hose on rare occasions, put the extra hose on quick disconnects and attach it when needed.



Be sure the hose has a burst pressure that significantly exceeds the maximum pressure rating of the spray pump you are using.


Cost & Quality:

Hose prices have increased in recent years because spray hose is made from petroleum products and because transportation is a significant component of hose cost. There are huge variations in hose quality and cost, so generalizations are difficult. Some hose remains flexible in cold weather. Some hose lasts longer despite being pulled across rocks or around the corner of a building.   When you find a hose you like, stick with it.


Hose Problems & Prevention:




When the hose is showing significant wear (cuts, scrapes, gouges, etc.), fix it. Do not wait for it to leak. It will cost a lot more in lost productivity to fix it in the middle of a job. The first 30 feet of the hose is the area that will break down first. When significant wear occurs, cut out the bad portion.




Significant temperature extremes can reduce hose life. Whenever possible, protect hose from extreme heat and cold.



Pressure Problems:


Occasionally spray hose can degrade pest sprayer performance. If everything appears to be working properly but you are not getting any pressure, it could be a hose problem.


If your hose is wound too tightly on the reel, the hose could flatten out and provide sufficient resistance so that you don't get the output you require. This condition may occur on low pressure 12 volt electric pumps. Unwind the hose. Turn on the pump, and rewind the hose onto the reel less tightly.


Another situation occurs when old hose gets spongy.   The hose expands, significantly reducing the pressure that can be achieved at the hose end. Replace the hose.



Policies & Procedures to Reduce Downtime:


Train technicians to inspect their spray hose, especially the first 30 feet or so, where problems are most likely to occur. A quick inspection for puddles under the reel will identify leaks on inner portions of hose. Encourage technicians to report problems and leaks, rather than living with them.


The inside portion of the hose (closest to the reel) experiences the least wear. Consider periodically reversing the hose to extend overall life.


Provide technicians with hose repair kits so that temporary repairs can be performed in the field. This allows technicians to finish their route, before bringing the truck in for a more permanent hose repair. A repair kit consisting of hose mender, clamps, knife, driver can be inexpensively assembled.


Instruct technicians to run the hose through a rag while rewinding the hose onto the reel. This removes debris that can cut or damage hose.


Perform truck inspections and check hose for wear and leaks.



Buying the right hose, then preventing hose problems is a lot cheaper than chemical spills and downtime. A proactive approach to your hose will save you time and money.